KAMPALA — With a lot of young people struggling to find employment & make money in a difficult economy made even more difficult with the COVID-19 pandemic it is important for them to think on their feet to survive and make a way.
However when jobs fail and businesses are unable to kick off due to a lack of capital, a lot of young people are left without options on where to start.
That is where e-commerce comes in. It is estimated that by 2025, over 5 million jobs will be created across Africa as a result of online marketplaces across the continent.
A lot of people know and understand e-commerce to be an online tool for consumers to make purchases, vendors to reach consumers, however e-commerce is more than that and can now become the saving grace for many unemployed youth to make money. One of the e-commerce programs helping youth in this is Jumia Uganda’s JForce program. The program is Jumia’s pioneer sales consultants program which aims at empowering and enriching entrepreneurs to earn money with the support of an established brand. JForce agents place orders on behalf of customers on the Jumia e-commerce platform and are able to make a commission with each sale.
“We started the JForce program to give opportunity to young people across the country to tap into their entrepreneurial skills without the need to have job experience or capital, all it requires is the passion and interest to be successful. In the time we started the program, we have seen young entrepreneurs earn upwards of 2 million shillings a month from the program.” Sam Kulubya, Head of JForce in Uganda said.
Alex Isooba is one of the young people who has managed to earn big online, “I joined the JForce program in 2018 after seeing an ad on social media. I started off earning less than 100,000 UGX but the more I kept at it, the more I earned especially during busy campaigns where I made up to 2,000,000 UGX in sales and I have been able to set up a shop in my hometown as well as start building a home with my earnings.”
E-commerce is rapidly growing in Uganda with Uganda projected to become the second largest online market in the East African region after Kenya. Ugandans are also increasingly migrating online, with the number of internet users increasing by 2% in 2019 to reach an impressive 23 million, 38% of the total population according to figures by the Uganda Communications Commission. This points to a progression to Ugandans moving online to make money, a progression made faster no doubt by the COVID-19 pandemic. So whether you are a business owner, or an entrepreneur looking to make a start, the online space just might be the answer for you.